POL - 60.00.2 Mid-Eastern Athletic Department Recruiting Procedure Statement Policy
The recruiting process offers prospective student-athletes an avenue to extend athletic participation at our member institutions. However, this process also offers an opportunity for coaches and prospective student-athletes to understand and focus on the importance of the academic mission of our institutions. Prospects can then make an informed decision on how an education at the institution will prepare them for their vocations and future contributions to society
2.1 The member institutions must be committed to conducting prospects' campus visits without recruiting abuses and to avoiding even the perception of impropriety. The member institution shall use best efforts to comprehensively educate all groups involved in the conduct of recruiting visits and shall investigate all allegations of recruiting-related misconduct. A set of internal controls should be in place to sufficiently monitor compliance and ensure public confidence has been established and would be periodically reviewed for effectiveness. If applicable NCAA, Conference, University or criminal policies are violated, immediate disciplinary action shall be taken. Such action could include termination of University employment and permanent loss of eligibility for prospects or student-athletes.
2.2 Member institutions should include in their institutional publications such as staff and student-athlete handbooks, disciplinary action(s) that will be taken if recruiting violations are substantiated after investigation. A full range of actions, such as termination of employment, impositions of fines and possible loss of athletics aid could be specified as outcomes.
2.3 Member institutions should enhance ongoing NCAA rules education, sexual harassment, ethics and life skills seminars with coaches, student-athletes, and other involved individuals with an emphasis on the institution's expectations and policies.
2.4 Member institutions shall conduct and document orientation sessions for student-athlete hosts and coaches prior to the conduct of unofficial and official visits. In addition, maintain documentation on how recruiting visit policies have been communicated (e.g., posted on bulletin boards, on website, included in student-athlete handbook and rules compliance publication, and/or reviewed during staff meetings).
2.5 Member institutions must provide a review of the institution's academic expectations and requirements of student-athletes and all students in general shall be undertaken with prospects on all official visits.
2.6 Member institutions will ensure that NCAA and Conference recruiting visit legislation policies and any applicable laws will be thoroughly reviewed with student-athletes prior to service as a host. These student-athletes will have the opportunity to ask questions regarding policies. Student-athlete hosts will then be held responsible for full compliance with the policies, for representing the institution in accordance with its stated mission for recruiting visits, and for avoiding even the perception of impropriety during recruiting visit activities.
2.7 Member institutions shall ensure that pre-communication with prospective student athletes and parents and legal guardians shall be included in efforts to educate all groups involved in the conduct of recruiting visits. Member institutions' recruiting mission statement and recruiting visit policies applicable to student-athlete and prospective student-athlete conduct and expectations will be forwarded to prospects in advance of official visits (e.g., with visit itineraries or advisement of NCAA banned drug list).
2.8 The member institution's Official Visit Form shall include a required affirmation that student-athlete hosts understand and have received recruiting visit policies when they obtain host monies. This form should also require a detailed account of official visit accommodations, activities and expenditures. The Conference office encourages that each institution determine whether a written exit questionnaire should be administered to confirm that all policies and applicable NCAA legislation were complied with during official visits.
2.9 Member institutions must ensure that head coaches are a fundamental participant in the recruiting visit process. Head coaches are ultimately responsible for ensuring that recruiting visits in their programs are in full compliance with recruiting visit legislation, policies and applicable laws. Head coaches must be committed to and effectively communicate the policies to any individuals (e.g., student-athlete hosts, assistant coaches, student managers and athletics staff) involved in recruiting visits.
3. General Recruiting Activities
3.1 All recruiting visit activities will be in full compliance with NCAA, Conference and institutional legislation and with all laws and ordinances of the institution's locale. Such prohibitions include but are not limited to the underage use of alcohol and the use of illegal drugs. In addition, sex shall not be used as a recruiting device and sexual harassment shall not be tolerated. Finally, gambling and gaming activities and the use of strippers, gentlemen's clubs or an equivalent entity are strictly banned from recruiting visit activities. Violations of these provisions will result in immediate and appropriate disciplinary action, which could include permanent loss of eligibility.
3.2 The Conference Office has determined that a conference-wide curfew was not appropriate; however, member institutions are encouraged to review the issue for possible inclusion into campus recruiting visit policies.
3.3 The member institutions shall submit-secondary violations of recruiting visit policies to the Conference office in the same manner as other secondary violations are reported. The Conference office shall provide the NCAA with an annual report of all secondary violations, including those involving recruiting visit policies.
3.4 The following is legislation that was adopted by the NCAA Board of Directors that was recommended by the Recruiting Task Force. The intent of this legislation is to ensure that prospective student-athletes' experience is the same as a regular student visiting your campus.
4.1 Air Transportation. An institution that provides air transportation for an official visit must use commercial transportation at coach-class airfare with no upgrades.
4.2 Campus Transportation. An institution that transports a prospect (and those accompanying the prospect) around campus during an official visit must use an institutional vehicle normally used to transport prospective students while visiting the institution's campus; further, to permit coaching staff members or student hosts to use personal vehicles to transport a prospect (and those accompanying the prospect) around campus during an official visit.
4.3 Pursuant to Bylaw 22.214.171.124.4, an institution transporting a prospective student athlete (and those accompanying a prospective student-athlete) around campus during the official visit must use institutional vehicles normally used to transport prospective students while visiting the campus. In addition, coaching staff members or student hosts may use personal vehicles to transport a prospect (and those accompanying the prospect) around campus during an official visit. As a general principle, institutions should note that vehicles used for transportation around campus should be consistent with the type of vehicle an institution uses (or would use) for regular prospective students under similar circumstances, regardless of whether the institution actually provides such transportation. Additionally, a coaching staff member may use his or her personal vehicle for such purposes, provided that vehicle is used on a regular basis by the coach and has not been modified for the purpose of transporting prospects. Further, coaches may rent vehicles for transportation purposes as needed, pursuant to institutional policy, provided those vehicles are considered basic transportation and not modified in any manner for this purpose. Finally, unmodified golf carts and the like may be considered basic transportation and may, therefore, be used to transport prospects around the campus.
4.4 Please note that per Bylaw 126.96.36.199 From Airport, during the official visit, any member of an institution's athletics department staff may provide transportation for a prospect and the prospect's parents or legal guardians between the campus and the bus or train station or major airport nearest campus.
5. Meals and Lodging
5.1 During an official visit, a prospect (and the prospect's parents or legal guardians) must be housed in standard lodging that does not include special accessories (e.g., Jacuzzis, suites) that are not available generally to all guests residing at the establishment and must eat standard meals comparable to meals provided to student-athletes during the academic year.
5.2 Pursuant to Bylaw 13.7.5, a prospect on an official visit shall be provided lodging and take meals as regular students normally do. Local commercial facilities may be used but at a scale comparable to that of normal student life and only within a 30-mile radius of the institution's campus. Lodging may not include special accessories (e.g., Jacuzzis, suites) that are not available generally to all guests residing at the establishment. Consistent with the overarching theme that prospective student-athletes should be housed in a similar manner as other prospective students generally, institutions should adhere to the following guidelines: Hotels selected to house prospective student-athletes should be similar to hotels in which prospective students are housed, hotels in which visiting teams are housed or lodging used by the institution for away from home contests.
5.3 Additionally, meals must be comparable to those provided to student-athletes during the academic year. In this regard, meals provided during an official visit will be considered standard if they are similar in nature to campus meals, including training table meals. Institutions should note that the training table meal standard is considered the upper limit for all sports regardless of whether training table is typically provided in a particular sport. Further, pursuant to NCAA Bylaw 13.5.2, a member institution may not arrange or permit excessive entertainment of a prospect on the campus or elsewhere. This restriction includes special arrangements for admittance to exclusive or elite restaurants where such opportunities are not generally available to the public.
6. Student Hosts
6.1 Students who engage in any host activities for prospects on either official or unofficial visits must be either current student-athletes or students designated in a manner consistent with the institution's policy for providing campus visits or tours to prospective students generally.
6.2 Member institutions should note that pursuant to NCAA Bylaws 188.8.131.52 and 184.108.40.206.7, a student host involved in an official or unofficial visit must be either a current student-athlete or a student designated in a manner consistent with the institution's policy for providing campus visits or tours to prospective students in general. In this regard, individuals are considered hosts if they are involved in traditional hosting duties such as tasks that require specific interaction with the prospect (e.g., entertaining, escorting, etc.). Individuals who are involved solely in administrative functions (e.g., stuffing envelopes, collecting unofficial visit money, handling complimentary admissions etc.) would not be considered student hosts.
6.3 Further, for purposes of this legislation, student-managers and other student employees are considered to be students as opposed to athletics department employees and, therefore, would be restricted to engaging in general employment functions and would not be permitted to host prospective student-athletes unless they meet the criteria noted in the abovementioned bylaws.
6.4 Finally, inasmuch as student hosting duties are considered incidental to athletics participation, and an individual must be either a student-athlete or a member of the official university host group, a student-athlete may not be paid to perform this function unless the university typically pays its host groups for their services.
7. Athletics Department Involvement with Institutional Hosting Groups
Pursuant to NCAA Bylaws 220.127.116.11 and 18.104.22.168.7, a student host involved in an official or unofficial visit must be either a current student-athlete or a student designated in a manner consistent with the institution's policy for providing campus visits or tours to prospective students in general. Consistent with this legislation, athletics departments should remain completely uninvolved in the management and operation of these programs. Athletics departments may however contribute funds to the overall university host program provided such funding does not result in the athletics departments assuming control, or compromising university oversight, of such programs. Further, if permitted by institutional policy, athletics departments may request specific hosts from the institution's pool of hosts only if such opportunities are available to other institutional departments and again, the athletics department does not compromise the university's control or oversight of the host program.
8. Personalized Recruiting Aides
An institution may not arrange miscellaneous, personalized recruiting aides (e.g., personalized jerseys, personalized audio/video scoreboard presentations) or engage in any game-day simulations during a prospect's official or unofficial visit. Institutions should ensure that anything provided or displayed during a prospect's recruiting visit should not be personalized and that institutions should not decorate prospects' lodging with streamers, balloons, fruit baskets or other "decorations" even if such items are not personalized. Institutions should not do anything out of the ordinary to facilities for purposes of a recruiting visit.